August 6, 2022

Nostalgia Series: Paris Austin’s Theatretrain Story in Greenwich

For our nostalgia blog series this week, we hear from Paris Austin who attended Theatretrain Greenwich since 13 and now 17 and finishing a level 1 Diploma in Performing Arts at Canterbury College, moving on to level 2 in the new academic year. Over to you, Paris!

I was about 13 when I attended Theatretrain Greenwich and was there for 3-4 years until I relocated to Kent and started college in 2021. I remember my first Theatretrain experience, which was actually a day trial at Ashford, because I was there for the holidays. I was so nervous because I didn’t know anyone there, but once I moved to Greenwich and settled I wasn’t as nervous because I felt comfortable with the structure that was set out throughout the day. At first I was particularly nervous about the singing and dancing and was very shy in those classes, but in the acting classes I would say that I was more confident since that’s what I love to do. Over my time though at Theatretrain Greenwich I made friends that I still talk to now and it has helped confidence in many ways. 

I remember taking part in Legally Blonde Jr. I portrayed the roles of Professor Callahan, Professor Winthrop and Kyle. Locally, I also played the Fairy Godmother in our version of Cinderella for Christmas. My best memories of Theatretrain are the friends that I made. Every morning on a Saturday I would get really excited to get dressed and catch the bus to head off to Mycenae House and start the day. If I had to choose to relive a performance it would probably be Legally Blonde Jr. 

At Theatretrain Greenwich we had a mixture of different teachers and they were all friendly and kind.  I love Diane who is the centre director of Theatretrain Greenwich. Every time she’d come to see how we were doing, she would give us notes on how to perform and how to act professionally on stage. 

Theatretrain helped build my confidence and helped me with the techniques I know now and I’m so grateful.  And it certainly helped me with my most recent performance at college, Little Shop of Horrors, when I played the lead role Seymour. 

Paris’s advice to anyone on the fence about joining their local Theatretrain centre:

“I would encourage anyone who is thinking about joining theatretrain to do it. Theatretrain is multicultural and accepts anyone from different backgrounds, sexualities, genders and so on. If the experiences at Theatretrain can help me gain the confidence I have now it can do the same for you. ” 

To get started and enrol at your local centre, just find your nearest Theatretrain. You can also read last week’s nostalgia blog from Lauren Keeling in Coventry. We’d love to share more Theatretrain stories! Send your story and photos to contentmanager@theatretrain.co.uk.

Theatretrain, a nationwide provider of weekend theatre schools for young people aged 4-18, specialises in weekly classes in acting, singing, and dancing. An emphasis is placed on learning valuable life skills such as confidence, empathy, courage, and resilience. If you know a child who loves to dance, act and sing or could do with a little confidence boost why not visit to find out what our performing arts classes can offer your child at one of our 80 locations across the UK.

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